Pop Culture and Japan

4 Ways In Which Sake Has Helped My Mental Health

 

Discovering new hobbies is a great technique for developing a positive mental health routine and in my case it’s been sake. Since setting off on my journey into the world of nihonshu, I’ve found it’s been a positive experience during times of poor mental health and I wanted to share four ways in which it’s helped.

Continue reading “4 Ways In Which Sake Has Helped My Mental Health”

Pop Culture and Japan

Punching Depression In The Face: An Exploration Of Mental Health In One-Punch Man

In recent years, mental health has become an important debate that people are discussing all over the globe. Men and women are opening up about their experiences with conditions like anxiety, but despite this progress, there is still an ingrained stigma attached to mental health, with many choosing to suffer in silence.

Creative mediums such as TV and comics can drive the discussion about mental health and help to break down the stigma of talking about it in public. By seeing fictional characters go through relatable struggles, fans might feel inspired to share their experiences with others and make positive steps towards managing a disorder.

A franchise that does an excellent job of portraying mental health in pop culture is One-Punch Man. With a mixture of comic and celebrity culture themes, One-Punch Man follows the story of Saitama, the most powerful superhero in the world who is on a mission to find an opponent worth fighting.

But for all of Saitama’s strength, he has constantly battled with depression and it’s proven to be the only opponent he cannot defeat with one punch. Mental health is one of the most important themes of One Punch Man, so let’s explore it in greater depth. Continue reading “Punching Depression In The Face: An Exploration Of Mental Health In One-Punch Man”

Pop Culture and Japan

5 Powerful Japanese Concepts For Creating A Positive Mental Health Routine

When developing a positive mental health routine for yourself, it’s worth looking to other cultures for inspiration. Japan has various philosophies that can help to make life brighter and more enjoyable. Whether it’s learning to appreciate small pleasures or choosing to be kinder to yourself, here are five Japanese concepts that promote positive mental health. Continue reading “5 Powerful Japanese Concepts For Creating A Positive Mental Health Routine”

Poetry

Great Wave

When Hokusai painted his Great Wave off Kanagawa

I wonder if he was painting what depression would look like for future generations?

Because that’s what depression is: a wave with claws

It rears up without warning

A tsunami of anxiety that swirls in the depths

A living, breathing thing as fathomless as nature

It crashes over you without rhyme or reason

It washes away everything you’ve built

And leaves you drowning in the wreckage

It casts you adrift on tides of uncertainty

Alone, even when there’s life all around you

The wave will come again

But you can ride it out with the people who know you best

They’ll be waiting with their lifelines

To pull you free

To stop you from drowning

To help you breathe again

Oubaitori Life

Oubaitori Life: Saitama

Oubaitori Life is a series that celebrates the richness of Japanese philosophy. It follows the lives of different characters and how they would apply Japanese concepts to their daily routines. One-Punch Man’s Saitama has many reasons for forming a specific routine that works for him. Determined to fight an opponent that matches his strength, Saitama suffers from severe depression.

But through adhering to certain principles, Saitama can find ways to manage his depression and improve his mental health. Continue reading “Oubaitori Life: Saitama”

Pop Culture and Japan

Could Mental Health First Aid Catch On In Japan?

Mental health is perceived in different ways all over the world. In Japan, mental health has long held the association of being taboo. Yet people working themselves to death is commonplace, while younger generations are feeling more pressure to enter a lifetime of work.

However, in recent years, attitudes towards mental health in Japan have started to improve. More people are going to counselling services and openly recognising disorders like depression and PTSD as illnesses. As acceptance around mental health grows in Japan, a discipline that could be very beneficial in the future is mental health first aid (MHFA). Continue reading “Could Mental Health First Aid Catch On In Japan?”